Friday, April 29, 2005

A PATH to a Healthier World

I would like to introduce you today to an organization that is new to me since the past few months, but one that I hope will forge a lasting relationship with me and some of my friends in the next few months. PATH is based out of Seattle, Washington. From their website:

"PATH is an international, nonprofit, nongovernmental organization that improves the health of people around the world by:

· Advancing technologies.
· Strengthening systems.
· Encouraging healthy behavior.

Headquartered in Seattle, Washington, since its inception in 1978, PATH operates 19 offices in 13 countries. We currently work in more than 100 countries in the areas of reproductive health; vaccines and immunization; HIV, AIDS, and tuberculosis; and children's health and nutrition. "

In a previous post, I told you about my adventures in translating Spanish-language poetry. My experience with Señor Francisco Azuela of México and Bolívia has led me to the translation of his book, "The Ardent Word". When I completed the translation, I sent him the manuscript and asked him to make a donation to an AIDS relief organization in his country on my behalf. Instead, he sent me the trilingual (English, French and Spanish) edition of his book and offered me the rights in order to pursue an international AIDS fundraising project. He suggested a book on CD, with illustrations.

I contacted some of my friends who are artists. Jody Kuchar of Wisconsin and Paula Pedrosa of Brazil (Brasil to her!) have come to my aid, and are working on illustrations as I type these sentences. Jody sent me previews of her work today and they are absolutely stunning! I know that Paula’s work will be beautiful as well. Locally, I have shared the text with two of my friends, and I sent invitations for participation to two friends in Colorado last night. My desire is to find illustrations for each of the 40 or so poems in the book, in any medium that can be digitally photographed once completed. The artists retain rights to their originals, but the images will be used and their work acknowledged in the final product. If you have experience working with Aztec/Mayan imagery and would like to participate in a volunteer effort to fight HIV/AIDS around the world, please contact me at

I contacted PATH about 3 weeks ago to ask them to be a sponsor of this project. They showed immediate interest by email. We set up a phone conference for yesterday and we discussed what we need to do to move forward with this project. PATH is now looking into the legal aspects of how to make this project work out for all of us involved. They are very enthusiastic as I am!

I am knocking on wood as I type these words, for I don’t want to ruin the project by being too eager to see it happen. This has been a project of love from the onset. Sr. Azuela’s work is a song of love for the ancient roots of his homeland. My translation was given freely to bring his message to the English language. Now my friends are bringing their gifts to the project. PATH will hopefully find a way to make it all come to fruition for the benefit of people living with HIV/AIDS in many countries around the World.

I remember the line from the film "Field of Dreams": "If you build it, they will come." It feels very much like the universe has brought this gift for me to channel to the world. Please join me in visualizing its success and in supporting PATH.



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